This is my first story by this author and I have to admit, the entire story made me sad. The 3rd story in Lynn’s Fireside series speaks of grief. The grief of losing a child, an only child at that, of divorce, of losing both your parents on the same day, in the same accident. It’s rare that I read a story where I’m miserably turning the pages because it’s got to get better. Something good has to happen soon. There’s no way that these two people can have such misery put upon them. But yes, it was just page after page of misery. I wish this story was different – happier, more romance driven versus the onslaught of sadness – crying, crying and more crying (that’s not even me, that’s the heroine).
Chelsea Dwyer and Aidan Deveraux are neighbors, have been for the past couple of years since Aidan and his 11 year old son, Derrick, moved in the neighborhood. Chelsea is the school librarian where Derrick goes to school. The story starts on the day that Chelsea hears a scream from outside her door and rushes out to find out that Derrick and his friend Shane were skateboarding and there was a terrible accident. Derrick succumbs to one of his symptoms. Terrible tragedy, unimaginable. Aidan’s grief is the main focus of the majority of the story. I’m not sure where the romance is in that.
Chelsea, bless her soul willingly sacrifices her happiness for ‘anything’ that will supplant Aidan’s grief. I can’t like or even empathize with a heroine who allows herself to be used as someone the way that Chelsea allowed Aidan to treat her like sh*t. Actually, I can’t even blame Chelsea because her character was set up for failure.
How do you start a new romance right after the death of your kid? How does that work really? Because this story was a good example of why it’s a terrible idea. Then there’s the whole thing with her ex-husband that the underlying reason, in his eyes, for their divorce. She’s got legitimate self-esteem issues from that and over compensates tremendously with Aidan by just allowing too much ‘I’m here for you, for anything including being your verbal whipping post’.
Aiden was rightfully a mess; he just lost his kid. The kid he raised by himself, with the help of his friends, but he was the sole responsible party for the upbringing and protection of Derrick. I can’t blame him for his grief. He treated Chelsea like sh*t because she allowed it. I don’t even know what to say about that because they were both set up for failure. I have to admit that I skimmed the sexy times because I was bawling in the last scene and just couldn’t make the switch that quick. The whole thing was sad, and for the life of me, I couldn’t figure out how all of Chelsea and Aidan’s friends wanted them to get together. The man just lost his kid – give him a blessed minute to grieve and come to terms with the fact that his son is dead.
The secondary story with Shane absolutely broke me. That poor kid, talk about survivor’s guilt and the way that Aiden treated him – wow just wow – he’s a kid for goodness sake.
Were it not for the HEAish ending, this would have completely failed me as a romance. Maybe if the romance for this couple was somewhere down the line and Aidan wasn’t so selfish in his actions towards Chelsea, say a year or two down the line but not a couple days, weeks or even months worked for me.
Happy reading folks!
*ARC provided via NetGalley by publisher
Click to purchase: Amazon
His to Cherish
by Stacey Lynn
Release Date: November 15, 2016